5 Enduring Lessons from the Greatest Copywriter of All-Time

2 May 2022

In our industry, we obsess over the ever-changing – the latest channel, the latest technology, the latest trend.

Instead, we should obsess over the ever constant – the principles that define success year after year, from one generation to the next.

73 years ago the greatest ever copywriter launched his agency in New York, with $6000 in his account. Within a decade he would take over the advertising world, reaching a level of fame never before (nor since) achieved by someone in our industry.

These were some of the principles that defined that career. They remain every bit as relevant and impactful today as they were then.

  1. If it doesn’t sell, it isn’t creative.
  2. Never stop testing & your advertising will never stop improving.
  3. On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.
  4. The best ideas come as jokes. Make your thinking as funny as possible.
  5. Don’t bunt. Aim out of the ball park. Aim for the company of immortals.


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